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LabSoC - Research

LabSoC participes the AQUAS European project

Our research activities are dedicated to the design of complex integrated and embedded systems, their security and their application to the so called Software Defined Radio.

Design of complex integrated and embedded systems

The ever increasing complexity of Systems on Chip (SoC) advocates for new methods and tools for their design and validation. LabSoC researchers contribute this challenge by investigating the modelling techniques form the most abstract specifications down to the detailed, low level, models of software or hardware components. Formal modelling and verification methods are heavily used and complemented by classical simulation.

Security of integrated and embedded systems

Security is a key component of the information society. Cryptographic algorithms and protocols, when properly used, can enforce security in the digital world. Many of them are nowadays considered as secure in their application domain, even if, in many cases, this is more a strong confidence than a formal proof. But security is frequently compromised by vulnerabilities introduced by the hardware or software implementations of cryptographic functions (information leaks through side channels like computation time, energy consumption or electromagnetic emanations, accidental or injected faults, sniffing or tampering with physical communication links, exploit of software flaws,...) In other words the spirit (algorithms, protocols) is strong but the flesh (hardware, software) is weak. It is thus essential to understand these threats and to design and validate efficient countermeasures against them. Our contribution to this very hot topic takes the form of three research topics:

  • Formal modelling of security targets, properties and requirements. Proof of security.
  • Static analysis of data dependencies in digital circuits. Identification of information leaks through hardware peripherals.
  • Confidentiality and integrity of the content of a SoC's external memories. Countermeasures against board-level probing attacks, cold boot attacks, DMA injections,...

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Software defined radio

The Software Defined Radio (SDR) is a very interesting challenge for system architects, that can be summarized as How to combine high flexibility, ultimate processing power and low energy consumption?

The LabSoC researchers work on hardware and software architectures for the Digital Signal Processing (DSP) that are power efficient, flexible and still deliver high processing power. One of the main application field of this work is the Software Defined Radio.

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